It seems like every day brings a new low-end risk of a tornado right now, and today is no different. While we don’t expect a lot of tornadoes, one or two could form and bring localized impacts again today. Severe thunderstorms are likely today from southern Nebraska to West Texas, with the greatest potential for large hail, damaging gusts, and a few tornadoes concentrated near the West Texas Caprock onto adjoining low Rolling Plains.

Locations:

  • Primary Focus: Near the West Texas Caprock and adjoining low Rolling Plains.
  • Secondary Risk Area: Central Plains region, most notably west Kansas.

Threats:

  • Large to Very Large Hail: This is particularly likely near the dryline and outflow boundary interactions in the enhanced risk area.
  • Damaging Gusts: Possible across a broad area, increasing with convective clustering.
  • Tornadoes: Isolated potential, especially where supercells interact with boundaries.

Timing:

  • Thunderstorm Development: It is expected to begin this afternoon and could last into the early overnight hours. The most intense period is likely to be late afternoon through evening.

Discussion

Weather Patterns: A complex mid/upper-level cyclonic pattern is influencing today’s weather, with a trailing shortwave trough moving from southern Idaho and northern Nevada to the Central/Eastern Dakotas by tomorrow morning.

Atmospheric Dynamics:

  • Surface Features: A low near St. Joseph, Missouri, is attached to a cold front moving southeastward, extending from southeastern South Dakota to central Colorado by this evening. A dryline, pivotal in thunderstorm development, will be prominent from eastern Colorado to the Western Texas Panhandle and the Permian Basin.
  • Storm Development: Widely scattered to scattered thunderstorms are forecast to initiate this afternoon near the dryline and a residual outflow boundary over South Plains to the Low Rolling Plains/Concho Valley regions. Activity may extend south off the dryline past the Rio Grande.
  • Severe Potential: Supercells forming near these boundaries are expected to produce large to very large hail and potentially damaging winds. Clusters of storms could enhance the severe gust threat, with isolated tornadoes more probable in areas where supercell structures can sustain themselves or interact favorably with outflow boundaries.

Impact: The combination of ample moisture, strong heating, and dynamic atmospheric conditions creates a conducive environment for severe thunderstorm development, particularly in the enhanced risk area near the West Texas Caprock and adjacent regions. Monitoring for supercell development and subsequent severe weather manifestations such as hail, wind, and tornadoes will be crucial throughout the day.